I Got up at 5 o’clock that Friday morning, knowing that I was going to ride the California Vintage to work. As stated in the last posting, I had to take the Breva in, but then it woujld be three hundred miles of riding on a real, honest-to-goodness sumbitchin made-for-the-long-road cruiser.
My Eldorado probably qualifies as a cruiser, but I think of it more as a “standard” because of the seating position and the usual lack of bags and windscreen. My usual commuter is a Ducati ST2 Sport tourer since it’s all bagged up and will hold my 17″ Mac laptop. I had been riding around all last week on a Moto Guzzi Breva 1200 Sport and having a blast. But now it was time to cruise.
This is the ninth in a series of posts about the Moto Guzzi Breva 1200 Sport. The previous posting is here.
Nine Days, 1080 miles
After nine days and more than 1000 miles, I possess a really good idea of what it’s like to live with the Breva 1200 Sport. I’ve previously given reasons for why someone might want to purchase it, but I’d also like to give my observations with respect to what worked for me and how my riding style altered as I reeled in the miles.
Not a “lean off” bike
On my Ducati ST2, I practice “lean off” turns from time to time as I ride it through some of the more aggressive stretches of roads in my area. I know these roads well and remember their eccentricities to the point that I can work on my technique. The big ST2 seat allows for movement of the rider around the bike.
The Breva’s seat locked me in place. Lean-offs were complex, and I found that I didn’t like the way that I upset the bike’s stance as I employed this technique. For me, I made much quicker time by adopting a more “Hailwood” approach, keeping my body smooth and silent through the twisties.
The Breva “wants” to be ridden in it’s own way. It’s good to know “how” a bike rides to decide if your “personalities” fit. I enjoy the diversity and investigation of different riding styles, so I don’t really have a dog in this hunt — but if you enjoy more focused techniques, I hope this helps you decide if the Breva 1200 Sport is for you.
Brakes and suspension tweaks really make it better
So I’m 46 years old.I’ve been on hiatus from my “mechanical hobby”; restoring cars, for nearly three years. I’ve been doing this since I was 18, and sold off my last Citroen DS21, on January 18, 2005.On a self-enforced hiatus for two years, it’s been another year because the Ideal Ride that lurked in my head just never materialized.
Enter “Test Pilot Bill” in Phoenix. I’ve known him for years through my wife, Sheila.He is possibly one of the most interesting people you’ll ever meet.
Last year by happenstance he showed me his newly acquired 2004 Triumph Bonneville that is absolutely perfect, low miles, and an H.G.-Welles-Time-Machine moment (I orginially attributed it to Orwell – forgive me!) with all the wonderful things about British bikes and none of their vices.
As I threw my leg over the Bonnie, something funny hit me.Kind of a “yeah… nice”.It fit not only my butt – it fit into my thoughts.Something deep inside me began eating awaytwo of the four wheels that my Ideal Ride had always possessed.From that moment, I began to think of a motorcycle as The Thing to replace the Car Habit I had nurtured for more than 30 years.
I didn’t know if my search would result in a Triumph like Bill’s, but I knew that I would start on a journey of self-discovery and, as I write this, I couldn’t be more excited about anything I have ever undertaken.